Good Monday morning, friends! What a beautiful day the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad today and every day. Yesterday I participated in a Twitter Chat for educators — something I hadn’t done in quite some time. I truly enjoy these opportunities to chat with educators from all over the globe about those issues we all have in common no matter where we reside. It was a 30-minute chat with five questions about the importance of being a reflective leader.
I could hardly wait for the chat to start because this topic interests me. Of course, I had plenty to share, but I really wanted to hear what other school leaders (in particular) had to say. The common thread throughout our time together was growth. You really can’t grow as a teacher, leader, or just an average Joe without reflecting on your practices. That really resonated with me.
In fact, just last week, as I reflected on what had been weighing me down, I discovered that it was me and my attitude. I felt shackled! You see, as a school leader, all you hear day in and day out are complaints. Parents, colleagues, and kids complain a lot. It’s not their fault; I think we’re just wired that way. If we’re dissatisfied about something, somebody’s going to hear about it.
I’ve learned that if you’re not careful, you’ll follow that example. It doesn’t take much effort to drown out the positive things you hear all day and focus on the negative. Suffice it to say, I wasn’t careful, and I, too, had become a complainer. So, I set a goal for myself last week. I decided that I wouldn’t complain about anything — no matter how annoyed I became, I would not complain. What I did instead was come up with two “if/then” solutions. If I had the power to resolve an issue, then I would do it — even if it wasn’t my job to do it. If something was out of my control, I’d seek help and attempt to resolve the issue without complaining. This was definitely a challenge because it’s so much easier to complain rather than keeping your mouth shut. I think I did ok, but this week I’ll do better.
Forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the [heavenly] prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 All of us who are mature [pursuing spiritual perfection] should have this attitude. ~Philippians 3:13-15
I think it’s important to reflect on who you were yesterday, and try to be better than that person. John Dewey once said that “We don’t learn from experience. We learn from reflecting on experience.” Imagine a world where we didn’t reflect on our practices — a place where outcomes would be the same because the input would be the same. If you want to reap something different, you must sow something different. It’s really that simple. What will you do differently today in order to get a different outcome? Scroll down to the comments, and join me there.
Before you leave today, turn up the volume and get ready to dance to my Music Monday selection by Mary Mary entitled “Shackles.”